Sunday, 29 June 2014

Sunday Chit Chat

Haven't done one of these for a while now have I?  I'm writing this quite quickly its the World Cup don't you know. My daughter has been sick today - both ends! Lovely and now the husband is lying down also.  I, on the other hand, have a cast iron stomach and have yet to be struck down.  A child at my son's pre-school was sick last week in a small room. As the mum came to pick her up she said "oh yes she was sick this morning!" You have got to be kidding me. As my friend said this is the ultimate mum sin. Taking your child into pre-school/school knowing full well that they are sick. Its just selfish - how desperate you gotta be for a few hours of 'me time'.  The rest of us all then have to suffer. I wouldn't dream of taking in my children if they had been sick in the morning.  Anyhow, I don't really think its that as my youngest hasn't been ill - I think my daughter is lax on the hand washing front at time. We're quite strict on it in this house. You have to be if you don't want worms (sorry if you're eating your tea), tummy bugs etc etc.  My children wash hands before every meal and if they've been out in the garden or touching the guinea pigs. However, my daughter is a bit hit and miss and I'm sure its that. Or she could have picked up bug yesterday when she was at a party. Who knows?

Talking of all things illness related. My children have never had nits.  Touch wood. Touch wood. I used to always wash their hair with tee tree oil and double platt my daughter's hair.  I like to think this has done the job. However, they have all had something that was never around when I was at school but, by all accounts, is very common if you google it. I am talking about Molluscum Contagiosum. Its just an awful thing to get rid of. My son first got these pearly spots (they look a bit like warts but are white hard spots) on the back of his legs over a year ago. I thought they were from cycling but as they didn't disappear I took him to the doctors who printed out the sheet on the subject. If you go to the doctors they will tell you they are harmless and will go away of their on accord.  They can take up to two years to go away!! I firmly believe he caught it at his old school where he was in a manky old hut. Luckily there were only about 15 of them and to get rid of them you have to squeeze them. My son did this and they cleared up very quickly once he had. You have to make sure you get the white stuff out and onto a tissue as these buggers multiply.

I have purchased this from Amazon but the crushed up tablets have worked also
My daughter then got them - they can easily be passed from bath water or towels.  Unfortunately for her she has eczema and it was worse for her. She had them  in clusters on her torso and in the crease of one arm. She got them about October last year (again in another festering manky hut at school - they have since moved to a better school). Unfortunately she screamed when we tried to squeeze them and also they spread. I tried everything and googled and found (see mumsnet forums) other mum's were also at their wits end.  I even paid £25 for a tiny bottle of liquid which is meant to burn them off - again nothing.  Anyhow, I thought I'd leave it - as they do clear up eventually.  But the other day I thought I'd have another google and found a blog detailing a mum's nightmare with this pox like virus.  Anyhow, she recommended Apple Cider Vinegar. By chance I had some tablets in the cupboard so I smashed them up and dissolved them in hot water. I dabbed them on my daughter's spots and tah dah - FINALLY something that actually works.  They are nearly gone (some turn black before they go) she does have a few scars but I'm hoping they will go. My youngest has a few on his neck about 10 so nothing major - some parents have had to contend with 100's on their child's body.

I'm writing this as I want to tell anyone who has had to treat a child for these spots is to get Apple Cider Vinegar. You can buy it in liquid form which I have coming my way but you could also do what I did. Its worked for us.

In other news, I completed 5 x kettle bell workouts, 1 x swimming (34 lengths) and 1 x 30 minute bike ride with my eldest which involved lots of little hill climbs. So a big giant tick for exercise this week. Food and drink = average.  I will start to track everything again etc after my two weeks off and throw myself into July.

My sister, Ness, is due to give an update on her low carb diet which heavily involved eggs! I look forward to reading her update.

See you soon.

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Kettle Bells and Me

I really love the Kettle Bells - I know I keep banging on about them but I do. I have dropped down to a 4kg weight as although I can lift the 6kg I figure its better to get the technique spot on rather than have an injury. Talking of which I'm not sure if it is totally spot on. This is because when you google Jillian and her Kettle Bells you get a lot of negative comments about her posture etc and don't do this unless you want an injury. Someone did say that she does get a lot of negative comments but that's probably because they are jealous of her success.  Good point.

I don't want to put my back out. I do feel a strain across my lower back but I also feel it in my legs and arms the day after working out. That's normal though isn't it?  There's a difference between that sore muscle feeling to pain. I've always had twinges in my hips even in my early 30's when I used to do Step (god that sounds prehistoric now doesn't it - Step not my 30's although hang on...) I have progressed myself to level 2 which I can do about 85% of.  I did the workouts Monday before the pre-school run, Tuesday at 6 am and Wednesday at 6 am and I went swimming on that day. I only swam 34 lengths as yet again my bladder got the better of me. Whilst swimming I kept thinking about food?! I was merrily doing the crawl thinking mmm would love a chinese on Saturday and then I thought I haven't made the 99 flake cup cakes for the kids in a while.

So today I had a rest day on the exercise front.  Its buddy's day off on a Thursday and the past two we have gone swimming. There's a lovely pool about 20 mins drive away with a wave machine, bubbles and a slide plus little boat floats and he loves it. I am feeling increasingly sad that this is our last summer together.  I didn't think I would - in the kind of way you say it but don't really feel it. But I do. I want to make these last few months count.

Today, we went up to the local shops and the library to renew all three of my kids's books. That's another thing we do together - go to the library to he can pick up his books, do the banking, buy a magazine, go on the little ride on horse outside the newsagents (yes they still exist 20p if you please) go to the coffee shop for coffee (funnily enough I'm on form tonight aren't I). He takes a ribenna with a rainbow cookie - me a cappuccino. Then we trot back to Sainsbury's where he sits in the little trolley (haven't been told off yet) whilst I get a few bits that I couldn't get in Aldi and normally comes to £45. How anyone affords to do their weekly shop in Sainsbury's I don't know.  By the way Aldi are selling 99p sunflower plants. Perfect for teacher gifts. I'm going to get some ceramic pots and the kids can personalise them with paint and what not.

Today, we had an extra time out buying the guinea pig supplies and a quick visit to the park.  I was going to go to the garden centre but with kids you have to know when its a bridge too far. That was a bridge too far. I love our Thursdays together.

He has also mastered his bike so no stabilizers. We just have to perfect pushing off and he's done. Another milestone.

Anyhow, back to the workouts. More of the same tomorrow and will try and fit in a bike ride. Food has been okay could do better. I definitely feel my stomach has gone down and someone even commented on it the other day.

See you soon!

Monday, 23 June 2014

#Britmums and ##############

Hashtags!! If you are not familiar with them.  That was my lasting memory of Britmums - the constant hash tagging of what was being said at the seminar, key note speakers and #having a great time with @ cue twitter name cue picture upload. It made my head spin if truth be told. Now, as you all know I'm not a techno blogger and I increasingly find myself disliking the constant social media intrusion into everyday life.  Its society in general so its not just Britmums but it was on a massive scale here. You know how you go on facebook and you have the pics of where someone is all smiles, having a great time, documenting their life.... well this was documenting every second!

I'm sure many who weren't at it thought they were missing out on all the fun. You shouldn't worry, yes I'm sure many had a nice time but I do feel it was over exaggerated which is a fair assumption given that it would seem some felt isolated and a bit low. Would that be the case if people put their phones away and actually focused on what was being said for 10 minutes minimum?  I won't be returning (I knew that before I went) but the person that didn't go and thinks they should have done based on the #hysteria will do.

Billy Butlin came to the conference in my desperate attempts to be an Ambassador!
Naturally all the hash tagging is great for the organisers of Brtimums (more of which later) you have a constant stream on Twitter (think it was trending at one point) and it hams up the event. But it did mean that people were constantly looking at their iphone, ipad and tweeting parts of speeches before the person had finished their sentence. Bloggers desperately showing people how much fun they were having.  Call me old fashioned but wouldn't it be better to listen to a speaker and not have your head bowed down with finger scrolling and picture taking and uploading the whole way through? I suppose the speakers are well used to it but I wasn't! My suggestion for next time - a phone free zone perhaps?

Let me rewind a little as there were some positives that came out of the 2 day conference. On Friday I made my way up to London for the Britmums Blogging Conference. I've never been to one of these - I knew it wouldn't really be my cup of tea but I was up for meeting up with Rachel who I'd had an on line love affair with since I started blogging way back in 2011. She did not disappoint - I would hope that she would concur that we were of similar mindset and had a relaxed time even with her poor headache that more or less wiped her out on the Saturday.

This chap is seriously worried he's standing next to a nutter! 
The conference itself is very well organised and credit to those that arranged it. They have got it down to a fine art and ultimately they are only facilitating a blogging community - they are not responsible for how that community conducts itself with others. Now, don't get me wrong there were lovely people there - I was particularly pleased to see Nikki from Stressy Mummy fame and just loved Michelle from Mummy from the Heart. However, social etiquette people. Social etiquette! Now, I don't buy this oh but people are different to their blog persona blah blah.  Granted you maybe shy but not that shy you've purchased a ticket and are attending a conference.  I'm not talking about being all leary and gregarious. I'm talking about if you are at a table - look up from your phone, smile and say Hi! Simples.  I made an effort to say "hello" but many don't bother. That's just rude.

Also if you are talking to someone and other's join then cast your eye around as you are talking, rather than just have a fixed stare on one person, it shows you are inviting the others into the conversation. There were plenty that were friendly and approachable, there were groups who had agreed to meet up (nothing wrong in that) but there were some as described above. That's life. What I would say if you do go on your own you will have to approach people and start the conversation.

I did witness the most outrageous blanking I've ever seen!! I was quite taken aback at the rudeness of one blogger.  This has nothing to do with a blogging persona or being shy its simply about good manners. I know a blogger who is very shy and has openly discussed how she struggles with this type of gig and she had no trouble smiling, saying hi and engaging in conversation.

We ordered room service after our Tapas and were in our PJ's at 9pm as we are proper hard core!! 
I digress. I used to work on the PTA and this gig was any summer fair you may have organised on steroids and more. The venue is perfect, the organisation, the printed schedules, the seats, the coffee, the sponsors and the content. That's really the key to this type of event isn't it? Great content. They had everything you could of think of to do with blogging.  I loved all the stands, in particular, Butlins of course and all the little competitions and what not.

I enjoyed the panel talk with Annie and the Fashion Foie Gras lady. I liked the founders - American ironically. The American accent just oozes enthusiasm and excitement don't you think? So when the opening welcome was trilled out by the two ladies I was up for this. I did, however, have an internal groan when their keynote speaker Emma Freud bounded on wearing a tiara. Urgh. I'm not a feminist. I'm not a party pooper but seriously tiara's?! I'm a 40 year old woman - I am not a child like adult like so many these days. It's hard to take anyone seriously wearing a frigging tiara. Would you go into an important meeting wearing fancy dress? NO! So, no my face was a picture after listening to her impressive CV and A lister tales and meeting the Queen talk. I am a republican so tiaras and royalty weren't cutting it for me.

I have to say I cringed throughout her speech - I know she wanted it to be light hearted etc but referring to her partner of 25 years as her 'boyfriend', repeating how she slept her way to the top (with said boyfriend), how she was in a band because of her big tits rather than singing and topping it all off with a tiara on her head.  I think she may have squealed at one point! I found her a bit child like (a bit like Carrie Bradshaw who someone once said is like a whimpering child like adult running through Oxfam - a reference to her fashion sense by the way!) and was just waiting for her to start skipping and clapping her hands.  There was this awful tumbleweed moment when she asked the audience to put their hands up if you have kids "yay" she said. Who doesn't have kids? "ahhh poor you". Ekk!

To cut a long story short - I headed home at 10.00 am on the Saturday. This was because my son had had an awful cough prior to me leaving (still does) and I wanted to get back.  I didn't miss the keynote speaker in the morning though. Ben (Life of a Widower) was moving, funny and a joy to listen too. On returning, I popped into his facebook page in which he said he was taking at least 6 months out and (this really struck a cord with me) instead of documenting his life he was going to live it. He wrote his blog because he lost the love of his life would he be writing a blog if the love of his life was still with him? I doubt it.

My blog doesn't interfere with the children - I blog between 8pm-9pm and maximum 3 x a week but it does mean I'm tapping away whilst the husband watches telly and I need to re-think  this.

I came away thinking about blogging in general and whether or not I will continue. I will do for the time being. But not for numbers, rankings, blogging communities, awards etc. I will blog as and when I feel like it and it will be to serve the purpose that I started with which is to lose the rest of my excess weight.

Until next time..

Thursday, 19 June 2014

The World Cup Diet

Consists of sitting down a lot and eating a few honey roasted nuts at inappropriate times of the day i.e 9.30pm.  I have made sure I haven't just been a total couch potato. However, if I don't do exercise in the day, there is no chance I'm doing it later on in the evening. This is because our household schedule is now running around the World Cup.

My eldest son is quite taken by it - so is my daughter but to a lesser degree. We've had to get them two separate World Cup sheets from the papers as they were fighting over who would fill in the scores. My son has done very well on the betting front - he's had a £2 stake with the hubster for every match and hasn't lost one yet. Correction he's just lost the 5pm match tonight. I should have taken him down to William Hill at the start and got him to pick each match winner - I could have been right in the money. Never mind about teaching your child not to bet - get them down the betting shop that's what I say!

Our dinner is now served before kick off. Although my husband nearly got it over his head the other night when he inquired whether dinner would be ready at 5pm or was I okay to work through it?! I reminded him that we do have a pause button don't you know. So when the 5pm game finishes its bath, homework, washing up, drying up guinea pigs away - all set for the match at 8pm. So there is no chance of me working out during that time.

Speaking of which I did the level 2 kettelbell workout on Sunday using the 6kg. I felt most chuffed as I was able to complete about 85% at this level. But my goodness, I was aching all over the next day and the next - hips, arms you name it.  I went swimming (why do 70 year old women insist on stripping bollock naked next to me? I get it you don't care but I do. I'm not ready to see what my body will look like in 30 years time. Put it away!) yesterday and did 46 lengths which was the earliest I could have done any exercise. So next time I do the workout I'll be using the 4kg until I'm confident I won't do myself a serious injury. I mean 6kg is nearly a stone isn't it.

Check out my 'business' pah ha ha cards for Britmums live. My husband couldn't help himself "Author? Author? Let's hope no one wants a copy of your book!" Bastard. I don't actually know why I put that but there you go.

So weight wise - I think I lost a 1lb but that was on Sunday when I had a cheeky gander.  I don't feel it now mind you and I have decided not to weigh myself for the rest of the month. This may be very foolish but I want a break from being a slave to the scales. I will continue with the exercise and make sure I have my photo's (a great incentive) taken at the start of July.  I hope you all don't mind. By the way my heel is 85% better its such a great feeling knowing I can walk up a hill and get out of bed without the pain - its still there but very dull. Result.

In other news, I'm more or less packed for Britmums tomorrow - Aldi were doing a lovely little hand luggage bag for £13 so thought that would be perfect. I tried on my new jeans from marks and sparks - I have been buying their sculpt and lift jeans which are excellent, pull up over your belly, are stretchy and lift your arse all in one go. What more do you want from a pair of jeans? Well you don't want 'skinny' which is what I thought they were - turns out I wear the 'straight' jeans.

So for my first introduction to a blogging conference I am going as an 80's teenager wearing jeans that look like they've been spray painted on and (no mean feat) make my thighs look double their normal size. Still least it'll be good post material for the fashion bloggers something along the lines of "what not to wear when you're 40 and going to a blogging conference".  I do hope I get a credit and a link to my blog.

Talking of links, I am now on facebook! So, if you like my blog and like facebook then I would be most pleased if you liked my facebook page.  Please click here.

Right off to watch the England match, excuse all the typos and what not its been a rushed one tonight. Be back soon with all the blogging goss from the blogging equivalent to the Ideal Home Exhibition.

Ta ta for now

Monday, 16 June 2014

Ohhhh What You Wearing, What you Wearing..

....for Britmums?! Seeing as Rachel did her linky on what she's wearing to Britmums on Friday I thought I'd reciprocate. Although, her photo's are far superior (as you'd come to expect) and all her clothes are nicely laid out and some thought has gone into how she is presenting her outfits. Then you have my contribution and, as you would come to expect, I just quickly ran upstairs (whilst cooking tea) threw my outfits onto the lego room floor and took some out of focused pictures.  I then ran back downstairs, tossed the shoes onto the kitchen floor and took another poor photo.

So what am I wearing? Who cares?! You all shout.  No one! I shout but you're going to see it in any event. I always stick to my wedding mantra when it comes to things like this. Which is - don't worry about it. This is because when it comes to weddings you fret and fuss but when you get there you see that there are plenty of people wearing cardigans and looking like they've made zero effort. That's the mantra.

Firstly, its cooling this week which suits me fine as quite frankly I don't want to be all sweaty and sticky whilst mingling with the bloggerati, however, I'm sure The Brewery has stretched to some air conditioning - still its better if its slightly cooler on my inner thighs. I didn't want to wear my maxi dress either as its not the most flattering number. I'm not going glam - I can do glam but no, just no. Comfort before fashion. Mumsy Moo I shall be - it is Britmums after all. I don't want to fly in the face of the 40 something (less of the something!) mumsy stereotype.

So without further ado - here are my 'outfits' aka what I'd wear on any other day. Pushing the boat out I'm telling thee. Actually since Rachel said she'd purchased some sucky in vests - I purchased some sucky in knickers. So I have pushed the dingy out a little.

I've plumped for the white number rather than my posh Lulu Guiness - although the white one did come from America and was a present from the hubster so it might be posh. Who knows.

As you can see the Butlins bag will be coming along to hold any purchases and freebies I may receive. I will also use it in my desperate attempts to become a Butlins Ambassador. That is my mission and Rachel may have to disown me at various stages during the conference.

Some nice out of focus tops - I can't be bothered to go upstairs and take better ones. All from mandco. I'm of a certain age and I am at peace with this. If I'm feeling skinny I'll wear the bottom one on the Friday but if not the middle one and the top one for Saturday.

What I'd really like to wear - my Breaking Bad T-shirt. Who knows it may make an appearance.

Skinny jeans or my denim skirt - again depends how I'm feeling - my fit flops to walk from the stations - see heelgate.

Plumping for the white wedges although I have tan ones which are slightly higher and would look more 1970's so will pack those too. I don't do light packing.

My going out bag - Fendi and very colourful given that we are off to the Cuban restaurant in the evening - in fact I may team this with my chicken t-shirt and skirt. I'll also pack my denim jacket and maybe my leather one.

So there you have it. I hope my 'business' cards arrive on time otherwise I'll be the blogger that came to the biggest blogging conference without her cards. I'll be writing down my details on scrappy bits of paper and that's always impressive! In any event, if you don't recognise me from these pictures I'll have a whopping great sticker saying "The 1970s Diet". You can't miss me!

Be back tomorrow with weight matters...

Saturday, 14 June 2014

Saturday Chit Chat

I remember writing back when the Olympics were on in 2012 that they were going to make me fat and I feel if I'm not careful the World Cup could  have a detrimental effect on my diet. I've manged 2 x kettlebell workouts this week which is a poor show considering last week I managed 5! I love the World Cup but it does mean you spend a great deal of time sitting on your butt watching television. Now, more than ever, I need to make time for exercise its just when?!

Yesterday, I watched a match at 5pm another at 8pm and to round it off one at 11pm (although I had to go to bed just before half time). Not only did I not fit in my kettlebell workout I got my holiday mojo going on and cracked open a bottle of tequila beer (!), honey roasted cashew nuts mixed in with pretzels! It was hot yesterday as well which adds to my general care free abandonment.  Not only that but I have Brtimums on Friday and just when I should be cranking up the diet and exercise I've taken my foot off. The last couple of days have pretty much been free fall.

My latest purchase from george at Asda - they have some great cheap summer clothes. I love the Brazilian colours and am wearing it now! And it would look much better if I lost more of my stomach weight
Today, we went to see my sister Sharon who cooked up some lovely sausages and french bread on the bbq. I had 2 x sausages in french bread and felt mighty full. I decided, just for good measure, to snack on the spicy crisps that were out on the table. I polished all that off with a big bowl of strawberries and cream. Needless to say I'm not hungry.  Now, my intention was to come back home (we are at home) and I'd quickly get changed, do a workout and then watch the football. Instead, I have my feet up, football on and am writing about doing exercise instead exercise!!!  I think more importantly I need to curb my food frenzy which has descended upon since the World Cup started. Rein it in girlfriend. Rein it in.  I am finding this therapeutic - maybe writing about it will set me straight.

England's game is at 11pm so perhaps if I work out prior to that match it will keep me up? What do you think? Its Father's Day tomorrow and my husband is very much looking forward to 3 x matches. In fact, its probably the perfect Father's Day for him! We will pop out in the morning for a family walk or something but again I need to work out.

Okay, I'm signing off but will let you know tomorrow whether or not I've got my arse in gear.

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Twitter Twats...

....and parenting politics are some of the things that featured in my week that was. Sorry, its been a week - the sun has been shining and I was exercising.  I managed 5 x workouts - yes you heard right my friends 4 x kettlebell workouts and 1 x 30 day shred workout. I also did a little bike ride with the kids on Sunday. I've done 1 x kettlebell workout this week and its only Tuesday. I need to put in the same amount this week also. So on the exercise front I am back on form, however, I haven't lost the 2lbs I put on. Darn it. I'm not too worried (am I ever!) as a friend who has hired a personal trainer (and I'm not saying I am working out to that level) actually put on weight one week when she worked out 4 x so I'm hoping it might be a body shock or something as my stomach looked and felt slimmer on Sunday.  I think pictures can tell more than scales in any event.

I don't really go on twitter that much - about 10 tweets a week if that. Anyhow I was promoting these England garden plaques my husband makes - he also makes other ones but these ones are specifically for the World Cup. So, trying to be a canny business woman, I tweeted a few people who mentioned the England flag and general house decoration. I failed to look up the timeline of one vile illiterate idiot so he tweets back "beat it you f'ing Chav scum" or words to that effect!! Not one to shy away from taking someone down - I pointed out his grammatical errors I think I did use the word 'illiterate' to which he replied he would hate to be as ugly as me!  This really made me laugh. Firstly, he missed a trick did he not - he didn't call me fat or old but ugly. Flattery will get you everywhere. I asked if he was 10 and whether or not he had anything else in his locker asides from insults and bad English. Clearly not as he buggered off back to taking photo's of himself and continuing with his painful tweets eg can't decide weather or not to go out. Had to fully restrain myself not to continue this pointless row with a total random knob stranger and say don't you mean whether.

Get your England Plaque for the garden from ebay
Then yesterday, having not learnt my lesson from engaging in any way shape or form on social media, I decided to leave a comment on a parenting website. This was after a what do you think of this type post. I was quite frivilous called the child 'vile' and that her barbie dolls should have their heads chopped off! On reflection this probably wasn't the most adult comment I could have left but it was the first that came into my head and brain and touch type did not engage. I'm pretty sure I typed what most people thought. In any event I got my telling off from two chattering classes type who really should have better things to do than stick up for some spoilt brat that needed to be taken down a peg or two. Oh get a sense of humour people!! You can't say anything on these types of forums without it all kicking off and really its best just not to say anything. It is the modern day Colosseum out there people! Beware. You have been warned!

I am really looking forward to Britmums - its next week and we've been sent an email detailing all the various stands and prizes people prizes!! I'm going to be seeking out the Butlins stand as they're looking for Ambassadors (pick me!) and other companies.

I am room sharing with Rachel threeyearsandonestonethenhome who keeps telling me to bring my PJ's!! Maybe she's thinking what if this woman is a total nutter who struts around naked? What if she sounds like she's a pearly queen and does the Lambeth walk into the conference? What if she's a psycho? We've never met each other so maybe it is a bit weird to share but I know it'll be fine and if I am murdered then Rachel is the prime suspect if you please!

Finally, as I need to watch the complainers, I saw this in the paper the other day and all I can say is Hooray!!

Until next time....!!!

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Tuesday Weigh In on a Wednesday!

Sorry a day late (two of my children were off school yesterday - better today but didn't have time to blog) although its not worth the wait! 2lbs on! . No surprises there scoffed myself at the fantastic BBQ at the weekend and think the tapas has caught up with me.  Fear not, I am not on the slippery slop - I feel great. My heel isn't 100% but is certainly a lot better and I am just loving  the Kettlebells. I worked out with them on Sunday and yesterday and on Monday I did the 30 day shred DVD. They only last 25 minutes but are very intensive and I feel my stomach is going down every time I finish them. I didn't go swimming today as wasn't sure if I would need to collect my son from school. I will kettlebell tomorrow though.

In any event, here is my most recent pictures. You may recall I posted before pics at the start of April, May and now June.  I'll let you be the judge of my swimming and more recently the Kettlebells.

I am more interested in the comparison with the start of May and the start of June. I feel my bum is smaller and I feel more toned. I lost 8lbs in the April-May pics and 3lb from the May- June pics. So not a huge difference between May and today's pictures. 

Can't see much of difference in the behind shots. Can you?


And Finally the front......


This has spurred me right on - I really want to see a difference in my July Pics. Until next time....

Monday, 2 June 2014

My Kind of Hotel...

...chocolat!! Oh yes, the lovely peeps at Hotel Chocolat wondered if I'd fancy reviewing their Father's Day chocolates. Mmmmm tricky one that. Disclaimer first and foremost - I had ONE. My husband polished the entire contents fairly rapidly it has to be said. There was maybe a brief period of savouring but nah pretty much scoffed the lot in a relatively short space of time. This is the man and I quote "I am more than content just to have one or two chocolates everyday" "I can make them last" blah blah.  This is when he bemoans the fact that any Roses or what not he brings back from the Co-op have been eaten by the kids in record speed.

So what did he get his gnashers around this time.....

This mighty fine array of chocolate and PORT!! My husband loves port! He particularly enjoyed the mini hazelnut buche and I quote "that was really special"
Now not only does he reckon he can make chocolate last he's also the equivalent of my luddite nature but instead of being a bit of a technology hater, he is a 'poncy' food hater. He is happy to eat tinned curry and reckons all Belgium chocolates are the same and even proceeded to tell me the other day that no one has a monopoly on saying its 'Belgium' chocolate.  However I think Hotel Chocolat have proved him wrong.  He was making orgasmic sounds and developed upper class finger gestures whilst sampling his chocolate bounty (excuse the pun). He's also tight when it comes to purchasing food. He rejoices at bringing home two for one offers of penny proportions so for him to say they were well worth the money (at £15 hardly extortionate!) is no mean feat.

I think he might even be expecting another taster for Father's Day - which is on Sunday 15th June 2014. Naturally I had a little gander around the rest of the site and yes there are some more expensive options but I have to say they are well worth it. They are of a superior quality than some other well know Belgium chocolate makers who frequent themselves in local supermarkets.  Not only is the packaging special - this came in a fancy bag bit like when you go shopping but the contents match the packaging.  Having said this, I couldn't help but check out their more affordable options. So here is my little selection...

These 'Dark Smiley Lick' lollies come in milk and white chocolate and are only £2 - a fancy treat from an Auntie (hint, hint!)
And you just know the mum is thinking "oohhh er Hotel Chocolat, this wasn't just slung in the trolley at the supermarket."
If your fella Father is into the World Cup or even your Dad, then I thought this slab was a perfect way to combine the two...

This slab of chocolate is from the rare and vintage range which we love on The 1970s Diet. Also Ecuador are in the World Cup £7.50 for 35g innit! Sorry have yet to tire of the use of this word in all many of circumstances
A little bit of luxury from the children and on sale at £3.75

From little boys to their dad - The Nibblatrons! £6

A touch of luxury £39

And if you really want to wind someone up then you could send them a chocolate old fossil for £8.50!
So there you have it - lots to chose from for any budget. Have a look around their website as there are some great bargains and items in the sale! All the chocolate featured on here is on their website

I was given a Father's Day box of chocolates for free (hard gig I know) for the purpose of this review. As ever this is a true and honest account of what the hubster thought of them.

Sunday, 1 June 2014

One Way to FleeceVille

So last week's Bank Holiday Monday BBQ was cancelled (at Nessa's speaking of which will be doing an update on her diet shortly for me) due to the bad weather which continued for 3 days. As we didn't have the new car (not new but newer than our old car) ready by then and had sold the old one - my husband in his infinite wisdom said let's book train tickets on line.

This I did with and promptly wished I hadn't.  The total sum for train tickets was just over £28 for the 5 of us for our return journey.  When we realised that the BBQ wasn't going to happen I naturally cancelled the tickets.  I was charged £10 for a refund! £10 frigging pounds! I was raging. I would have expected a charge of some sort - maybe percentage related to the cost of the ticket but not over 33%. I suspect you are meant to feel grateful that you get anything back but most decent companies will refund you a ticket/booking if you give them 48 hours notice. Take - you can book a luxury weekend away and get a full refund.  Blatant profiteering by this ticket company.

Naturally I took to twitter and facebook. I got the standard its in the terms and conditions blah blah. Yes because we all read those don't we.  On twitter I asked the question if the ticket was for, say, £300 would you still get charged £10? The answer was yes! Quality.  Where's the logic in that?! Morally its wrong isn't it. Grrrrrrrr. Still, if you look at their facebook page there are numerous disgruntled customers on various issues. One poor lady had booked tickets for the family but weren't sitting next to each other! Anyhow, their PR guru person on twitter responded to one of my sarcastic tweets (would you owe them money if your ticket was under £10) with 'YIP'. That says it all.

So, yesterday was Nessa's BBQ and the weather was perfect for it. She'd gone to an enormous amount of effort with an array of food - burgers, sausages, belly pork ribs, chicken, pasta, mozzerella and tomatoes, salad, cakes, more cakes, strawberries, drinks and so it went on. I had 3 x beers - I don't ordinarily drink beer but I knew red wine was a no no, I don't drink white wine and didn't want to have diet cokes etc so beer was my drink of choice!! I wasn't drunk or anything but all that night I had another awful headache. I think I get so dehydrated when drinking and as ever I always seem to get my hangover (doesn't take a lot) there and then. I naturally ate too much - lots of chicken, salad, belly pork and one sausage. I also had some cake and strawberries. I didn't have dinner when I got home but I didn't need to - I'm still full now and its Sunday!  I feel bloated and yuck to be honest haven't over eaten like that in quite some time.

I haven't managed to do another work out since my last blog post but am getting up tomorrow early (kids have inset day) if it kills me. Then its back to the normal routine for their last term at school before they're off for the summer hols. My plan is for an early morning workout Tuesday, swimming on Wednesday and something Thursday. I'm meeting an old friend on Friday. I have to make more of an effort at the weekend. I also need to put my most recent photo's up on here so will do that shortly also.

Britmums is only a couple of weeks away now and I still don't know what I'll wear - I don't fancy dressing up in the day and I need to start thinking about it really as I am staying the night and going to the conference the next morning.

Until next time...